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JJ’s Legacy: An Organization Changing Lives in Kern County

JJ’s Legacy: An Organization Changing Lives in Kern County

June 10, 2020

Finding purpose and giving back to the community is a big part of our focus at Charpentier Wealth Strategies. That’s why I’m thrilled to highlight an organization right here in Kern County: JJ’s Legacy, a non-profit dedicated to organ donation awareness and other forms of outreach such as leadership programs and financial and medical grants.

JJ’s Legacy began when Jeffrey Johns passed away from a tragic accident in 2009. Inspired by the gift of life Jeffrey provided by donating his organs and tissue, his mother, Lori Malkin, started the organization to help others.

Since then, JJ’s Legacy has managed to touch the lives of thousands by educating people on the importance of organ donation. There are currently 115,000 people waiting for organ and tissue donations in the United States and 350 of those cases are in Kern County - yet only 32% of the local population are registered organ donors.

“Organ donation saves lives in so many ways,” says Lori. “A mother can see her daughter get married, be a grandmother. A father can play ball with his son. A child will be able to go college and be a mother or father. A recipient will be able to make a difference for so many others. For a donor family it gives us something to hold onto knowing your loved one was a hero and saved lives.”

Here is one of the many stories from JJ’s Legacy

Olivia Gonzales’ story started the day she was born as she suffered birth trauma. Luckily, almost all of her organs recovered 100% except for the kidneys. Due to complications at birth, there was a lack of blood flow to the kidneys and they stopped working. Shortly after being born, Olivia went on dialysis. On October 19, 2017, just before her second birthday, Olivia received a perfectly matched deceased donor transplant.

Colton Braggs’ story began before birth as his parents were already aware of some of the complications he faced with his kidneys and heart. At about 8 months, Colton was placed on the donor waiting list. Then on September 30th, 2017, just before his second birthday, Colton received his transplant all because someone choose to give the gift of life. (CLICK HERE for the full story and video.)

How you can get involved

JJ’s Legacy hosts events and programs and offers many opportunities for community outreach (you can find out more about that here). But possibly the most important thing you can do to help is register to be an organ donor – and JJ’s Legacy makes that easier than ever. Just CLICK HERE to be directed to their registration page and know that with one click of a button, you could possibly give someone the gift of life someday.

Debbie Charpentier has been serving clients since 1989 by using a holistic, comprehensive approach that helps clients create the life they value and the legacy they envision. Charpentier Wealth Strategies is a Bakersfield, CA Financial Planning practice that offers fee-based financial planning services. To contact Debbie, email  Debbie Charpentier is a registered representative offering securities and investment advisory services through Lincoln Financial Advisors Corp., (Member SIPC). Charpentier Wealth Strategies is not an affiliate of Lincoln Financial Advisors.


This is being provided for informational purposes only. JJ’s Legacy is not an affiliate of Lincoln Financial Advisors Corp. Lincoln Financial Advisors is not responsible for and does not guarantee the accuracy of the information or material contained therein.